sixity how-to repair guides

How To Replace and Install a Snowmobile Drive Belt

When to Replace Your Snowmobile Drive Belt

Your snowmobile's drive belt is arguably the most important component of your snowmobile's drive train. A damaged or misshaped belt will hinder performance significantly and of course if it fails altogether your sled is going nowhere.


The good news is that belts have come a long way in design and materials used over the past decade or so. It used to be a common practice to keep a spare onboard because a failed belt wasn't all that uncommon of an occurrence. The bad news is the price of a drive belt has gone up as much as 300% over the price of the old belts but the payoff is in a longer, hassle free service life.


If you feel you have experienced a reduction in performance it's a smart idea to check the drive belt first. If a belt doesn't fit correctly it can't efficiently transfer energy from the engine to the tracks. Look for crowning (a hump on the top of the belt) or areas that look like an hourglass (from side pressure of the clutch). Obviously any belt that is cracked has to be replaced.


Inspect the Fit

The belt has to fit to work properly. There should be 1/16th to 1/8th of an inch of the belt sticking up above the secondary sheaves of both clutches. If it is more the belt has stretched and is now too long. Also check the "deflection" by laying a straight edge across the top of the two clutches and then pressing down on the belt midway between the clutches. The distance between the belt and the straight edge should be between 1 1/18th and 1 1/4 inches. If it's outside that range it's time for a new belt.


Things You'll Need:

  • Replacement drive belt
  • Screwdriver
  • Socket wrench set
  • L wrench (usually supplied by manufacturer)
  • Straight edge
  • Ruler or tape
  • 3M Scotch Brite scuff pad
  • Shop rag
  • Owner's manual

Preparation

Be sure that the last direction your sled went was forward. Trying to replace a belt when you are in reverse can seriously damage the snowmobile. Consult your owner's manual to determine which plate you need to remove to expose the drive belt and clutches.


Removing the Drive Belt

  1. Rotate the driven clutch a ¼ turn counterclockwise to make sure you have forward (not reverse) engagement.
  2. Insert the L wrench in the hole located on the outer sheave of the clutch and turn counterclockwise until the sheaves separate enough to remove the belt.
  3. Remove the belt.
  4. Use the scuff pad to clean the inside surfaces of the sheaves and wipe clean with a shop rag.
  5. If the belt was just marginally stretched out you may want to wash it in hot soapy water, dry it and save it as an emergency spare.

Installing the Drive Belt

  1. At this point the L wrench should still be engaged and the sheaves in the open position. Slip on the belt.
  2. Wiggle the belt to take out the slack as you turn the L wrench clockwise to close the sheaves.
  3. Re-install the panel.
  4. The break in period is usually 20 to 30 miles. You don't have to go slow just take it easy. This ride allows the belt to "seat" in the clutch so it can perform to its full capacity.

Remember to always check your owner's manual for the specifications that apply to your particular make and model.


Like most things in life, the better quality you buy the better performance you'll experience and the longer service life you can expect. These belts operate in environments where the temperature can hit 2300, they are exposed to tremendous torque and shoot through both clutches 9,000 time per minute. Tougher is better.


- End of Procedure -


Return to all Repair & Install Guides

shop gates and dayco snowmobile drive belts

How To Replace and Install a Snowmobile Drive Belt

When to Replace Your Snowmobile Drive Belt

Your snowmobile's drive belt is arguably the most important component of your snowmobile's drive train. A damaged or misshaped belt will hinder performance significantly and of course if it fails altogether your sled is going nowhere.


The good news is that belts have come a long way in design and materials used over the past decade or so. It used to be a common practice to keep a spare onboard because a failed belt wasn't all that uncommon of an occurrence. The bad news is the price of a drive belt has gone up as much as 300% over the price of the old belts but the payoff is in a longer, hassle free service life.


If you feel you have experienced a reduction in performance it's a smart idea to check the drive belt first. If a belt doesn't fit correctly it can't efficiently transfer energy from the engine to the tracks. Look for crowning (a hump on the top of the belt) or areas that look like an hourglass (from side pressure of the clutch). Obviously any belt that is cracked has to be replaced.


Inspect the Fit

The belt has to fit to work properly. There should be 1/16th to 1/8th of an inch of the belt sticking up above the secondary sheaves of both clutches. If it is more the belt has stretched and is now too long. Also check the "deflection" by laying a straight edge across the top of the two clutches and then pressing down on the belt midway between the clutches. The distance between the belt and the straight edge should be between 1 1/18th and 1 1/4 inches. If it's outside that range it's time for a new belt.


Things You'll Need:

  • Replacement drive belt
  • Screwdriver
  • Socket wrench set
  • L wrench (usually supplied by manufacturer)
  • Straight edge
  • Ruler or tape
  • 3M Scotch Brite scuff pad
  • Shop rag
  • Owner's manual

Preparation

Be sure that the last direction your sled went was forward. Trying to replace a belt when you are in reverse can seriously damage the snowmobile. Consult your owner's manual to determine which plate you need to remove to expose the drive belt and clutches.


Removing the Drive Belt

  1. Rotate the driven clutch a ¼ turn counterclockwise to make sure you have forward (not reverse) engagement.
  2. Insert the L wrench in the hole located on the outer sheave of the clutch and turn counterclockwise until the sheaves separate enough to remove the belt.
  3. Remove the belt.
  4. Use the scuff pad to clean the inside surfaces of the sheaves and wipe clean with a shop rag.
  5. If the belt was just marginally stretched out you may want to wash it in hot soapy water, dry it and save it as an emergency spare.

Installing the Drive Belt

  1. At this point the L wrench should still be engaged and the sheaves in the open position. Slip on the belt.
  2. Wiggle the belt to take out the slack as you turn the L wrench clockwise to close the sheaves.
  3. Re-install the panel.
  4. The break in period is usually 20 to 30 miles. You don't have to go slow just take it easy. This ride allows the belt to "seat" in the clutch so it can perform to its full capacity.

Remember to always check your owner's manual for the specifications that apply to your particular make and model.


Like most things in life, the better quality you buy the better performance you'll experience and the longer service life you can expect. These belts operate in environments where the temperature can hit 2300, they are exposed to tremendous torque and shoot through both clutches 9,000 time per minute. Tougher is better.


- End of Procedure -


Return to all Repair & Install Guides

shop gates and dayco snowmobile drive belts